The Reverend Jesse Jackson does not so much enter a room as rearrange its molecules around him. When he comes into the lobby of a London hotel, you can sense his arrival before you see him, as though the sheer force of his personality has displaced the air. He is physically imposing – more than six feet tall with broad shoulders and a boxer's bulk – and walks slowly, oozing a sense of purpose. He is, it must be said, quite terrifying to behold.
When we meet, he looks me straight in the eye, takes my hand and bends to kiss it . . .